ENGL 0524: Approaches to TESL
Lecture Notes for Class 2: January 11

I. Overview: Relationship between theories of language, theories of learning, and approaches to teaching ESL.

II. What does a person learn when he/she learns a language?

A. Language

  1. Phonetics
  2. Vocabulary
  3. Grammar
  4. Semantics

B. Language Use

  1. Discourse
  2. Functions
  3. Speech Acts
  4. Style
  5. Register
  6. the four skills

C. Communication

  1. A model of communication
  2. Topic
  3. Purpose
  4. Situation
  5. Information gap
  6. Negotiation of meaning (interaction)

III. Historical Overview of Language Teaching Methodology

A. Grammar-Translation Method

  1. Purpose: to read literature in the target language; develop mental abilities.
  2. Emphasis on vocabulary and grammar, usually presented in the students' native language.
  3. Deductive explanations of grammar and vocabulary.
  4. Little speaking and listening in the target language.
  5. A teacher-centered classroom.
  6. Criticisms/comments
    • boring
    • little communication
    • may have some usefulness at advanced level in a specialized field.

B. Francois Gouin and the Series Method

  1. A "natural" approach.
  2. Learning a second language is similar to learning a first.
  3. A "direct" method: direct association between meaning and the target language.
  4. Target language used exclusively during instruction.
  5. Context created by means of physical actions.
  6. Inductive learning of grammar.
  7. Criticisms/comments: See Direct Method below.

C. The Direct Method

  1. Another "natural" approach.
  2. Direct association between meaning and the target language.
  3. No use of native language during instruction.
  4. Emphasis on oral communication skills.
  5. Language taught was that of everyday use.
  6. Meaning demonstrated through the use of realia.
  7. Syllabus based on situations.
  8. Inductive learning of grammar.
  9. Criticisms/comments:
    • may be most useful at lower levels of proficiency
    • may develop inaccurate fluency
    • structures not presented in coherent sequence
    • reliance on use of target language and inductive learning may be at the expense of time and efficiency.

D. Demonstration of Direct Method

  1. Instructor demonstrates using Japanese greetings and introductions.
  2. Class discussion focusing on the use of target language only, situational context, inductive presentation of language, teacher control.

E. Video Observation

  1. Discuss language used in the classroom.
    • Language used for classroom management.
    • Language used during classroom activities.
  2. Advantages and disadvantages of using L1 in classroom management.
  3. View Managing learning activites: the use of L1
  4. Discuss this instructor's use of L1 and L2 in the classroom.
IV. Assignments

A. Readings: Brown: 3, 6, and 7; Larsen-Freeman: 4
B. First Classroom Observation assignment. Due: January 25.